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Transplanting harddrives to another machine


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#1
brashley46

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I'd like to know whether it is possible to transplant my harddrives to a faster machine. I have a 20G and a 2G harddrive in my old Dell Optiplex GN+, running Win XP with all the SP updates, and an Abyss X2 server running on the smaller, slaved HD. The Dell has the fastest processor available for it, an MMX 233. I bought my wife a Mac last summer, and her old custom Windows machine with a fast processor is sitting here gathering dust. How would I go about moving my HDs to the faster machine, and in particular guarantee that my webserver would continue to run?
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#2
-=blaster=-

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Physically the drives should just swap over. However, the operating system will have to be re-installed. There are some cases where this hasn't been needed, it's just a matter of how similar the hardware is.

:whistling:
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#3
Rockster2U

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I can't answer the Abyss X2 Server question because I know absolutely nothing about it or the details of how this is configured. However, the system drive can be moved to the other machine (assuming your boot files are on that drive) and it will require a Repair Install which means you need your original XP CD and your original key. (yes, you will be prompted for this) Additionally, if its an OEM version, you will most likely have to call Microsoft after the repair for phone activation as an OEM disc is supposed to be restricted to the original machine it was installed on. MS is pretty reasonable about this, however, strict adherence to their licensing agreement would require the purchase of another OS. A lot will depend on how you approach the service rep - I've not had problems in this regard.

My recommendation would include moving both drives to the 'faster machine, booting to your CD after the hardware swap and then proceeding to the second R prompt (first one is recovery console which you don't want). The second prompt will come when you elect to install the OS and the machine gives you an opportunity to Repair the existing installation. This will keep all data intact however you will have to reinstall most Windows Updates and Service patches. I think you will be OK with your Abyss X2 on the second drive remaining intact, but if its mission critical, investigate this further before you do anything. The other issue you will face concerns the age of your XP CD - if you are running SP2 and don't have a CD with SP2, you will have to make a slipstreamed CD that includes it. You could also borrow a newer SP2 CD, and about the only restriction there is that you can't mix a Corporate Gold CD with a normal XP CD or vice versa. (this shouldn't affect you but I mention it for the benefit of others who may want to do something similar) For simplicity, you don't want any other HDD's left in the "fast" machine and I'd recommend disconnecting any card readers for the time being to eliminate the potential for any strange drive lettering.

This is actually a pretty simple and straight forward procedure but if it sounds too daunting, get some help. One can not simply move the drives and expect anything except problems, regardless of how similar the hardware may be. Total time involved should be roughly a half hour before re-installing service patches and updates.

:whistling:


edit: For clarification - I'm making the assumption that this was an after market installation on your Dell because a 233MMX PII was circa 1995/1996, some 5-6 years before XP was commercially available.

Edited by Rockster2U, 27 December 2006 - 07:39 AM.

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